UN Committee Report on Palestinian Bid Expected Next Month

The United Nations committee currently reviewing the Palestinian application for UN membership is set to draft and review the report on the bid in November, according to information obtained by The Mideast Update. Security Council diplomats have said that the Committee on the Admission of New Members is to meet at the expert level twice more, with the committee drafting a report following a review of the expert’s work on November 3. That meeting will be held at the ambassadorial level.

Then on November 11, the committee, also at the ambassadorial level, will review the report. Generally speaking, these reports include the positions of the committee. If there is no consensus position, the varying positions in the committee will be summarized. The Security Council referred the application to the committee for review on September 28.

The Palestinian application ultimately must go to the Security Council as a whole for a vote, although it remains unclear when that vote will take place. The Palestinians need nine yes votes and no vetoes in the Council for the application to advance to the UN General Assembly for a final vote on their membership bid. The US has pledged to veto the proposal if necessary.

According to Security Council diplomats, the experts currently reviewing the application are set to meet this week and next. The admissions committee timeline decision was reached alongside a status update discussion held by the committee yesterday. The committee has so far met twice at the working level.

Meanwhile the diplomatic efforts regarding the UN bid are ongoing. According to the WAFA Palestinian news agency reported that Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour told Voice of Palestine radio he asked the “Non-Aligned Movement” to meet in the Security Council in the near future. The non-aligned states in the Security Council include India, Lebanon, Nigeria and Colombia.

According to WAFA’s report, Mansour wants that meeting to discuss US “stalling” on the application and call for a “final answer.”

The Israelis are also continuing their diplomatic efforts as well. According to Prime Minister’s spokesperson Ofir Gendelman’s Twitter feed, Netanyahu met with Columbian Foreign Minister Maria Angela Holguin and “thanked her for her country’s opposition to a unilateral establishment” of a Palestinian state. As one of the current Security Council members, Columbia is an important state in the current Palestinian UN bid.

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, October 19, 2011)